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A Thrill of HOPE

It’s the most thrilling time of the year! I know… the familiar song uses “wonderful”; however, the Christmas season also involves a BUNCH of thrills. For children, they are thrilled at the thought of Santa and the gifts they will find under the tree Christmas morning. For parents, there are a whole lot of “thrills” involved with the Christmas preparations and pageantry. Yes, there are thrills involved with both giving and receiving… receiving and giving.

The act of giving and receiving a physical item provides thrills for both involved parties… even some happy tears. This happened to me recently when a bestie client of mine made me stop what I was organizing at the time to open her gift. She knew I had been eyeing a Talbots sweater featured in their Christmas catalog. As much as I loved that sweater, I couldn’t justify the price… it just seemed too extravagant with a child on the verge of college age. So, when I unwrapped the paper and eyed “Talbots” in bold red and white letters on the box, I immediately knew why she was so thrilled for me to open her gift. I began to cry happy tears, and so did she… before I even took off the box top. We experienced a shared thrill… one that we will never forget… she, in the giving and myself, in the receiving. Yes, thrills can come from the act of giving and receiving a physical gift.

Aside from physical gift giving, we all are gifted with special talents and skills that enable us to be the unique peeps we are. God didn’t gift us with those gifts to hide them under a bushel. No, God gave us those gifts to share through serving others. He gifted us so we can gift others. Our gifts are our way of sharing God’s light for the thrill of those around us. Whether we are good at organizing, designing, building, teaching… we all have something to thrill others with. And like physical gift giving, sharing our gifts gives a thrill for both the giver and the receiver… a thrill of HOPE for both.

The giving of our God given gifts trumps physical presents in so many ways. When we give of ourselves, we give the present of our presence. We are present while giving our presence of HOPE. Yes, the present pun was intended… you are welcome 😉. I can’t think of a better thrill filled with HOPE than giving of ourselves… giving the gift of our time while sharing our gifted talents with those who need them most. This sharing elevates the thrill of HOPE gift giving to another level, beyond what any physical gift provides.

Of course, Jesus trumps us all in the gift giving “thrill of HOPE” department. During His thirty years on this earth, He shared God’s Truth with those around Him. Jesus gave us a model for how we should give; positively touching and transforming lives along the way. Jesus gave us a present through His godly presence; inspiring those who believe in Him to share God’s Truth, spiritual fruits, and HOPE with those in need of His love.

But wait, there’s more… there’s Jesus’ ultimate gift. Jesus didn’t stop with sharing God’s Truth, His presence, or His spiritual fruits… no, Jesus gave an indescribable gift to all of us. He died on the cross to cover our sins with His blood. For those who believe in Him, our sins are covered by His grace, and we are seen as righteous in God’s eyes. Yes, Jesus died so that we are free of sin’s death. There is by far no greater gift than what Jesus sacrificially did for each of us.

I wish you a very blessed Christmas season as you gather with your loved ones near and far. As you gift them with physical gifts, may you also gift them with your God given gifts… meeting their needs, fulfilling their wants, while filling them with joy. May you experience the gift of people’s presence as you are present with those you love… thrilling them with your love, joy, and HOPE while filling yourself with love, joy, and HOPE at the same time.

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